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The evolution of MSP started in the 1990s with the emergence of application service providers (ASPs) who helped pave the way for remote support for IT infrastructure. From the initial focus of remote monitoring and management of servers and networks, the scope of an MSP's services expanded to include mobile device management, managed security, remote firewall administration and security-as-a-service, and managed print services. Around 2005, Karl W. Palachuk, Amy Luby (Founder of Managed Service Provider Services Network acquired by High Street Technology Ventures), and Erick Simpson (Managed Services Provider University) were the first advocates and the pioneers of the managed services business model.
Now in its sixth year, the MSP50 UK annual list recognizes top performing Managed Service Providers across the United Kingdom. For the 2020 award, the entire selection process has been redesigned in order to better spotlight those MSPs who excel over several critical areas, such as support services, customer satisfaction, market growth, certifications, and innovation. All named MSPs below have a proven track record of delivering premium IT Services and cloud-based solutions in the UK.
Under this subscription model, the client or customer is the entity that owns or has direct oversight of the organization or system being managed whereas the Managed Services Provider (MSP) is the service provider delivering the managed services. The client and the MSP are bound by a contractual, service-level agreement that states the performance and quality metrics of their relationship.
Cognizant delivers expertise and services for businesses within 20 industries, including banking and financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, life sciences and retail. Cognizant engenders a high level of loyalty. More than 90 percent of the firm’s revenues come from returning clients. The firm has established strong technology partnerships. These include: AWS, Google Cloud, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, Salesforce, SAP and VMware.
The first books on the topic of managed services: Service Agreements for SMB Consultants: A Quick-Start Guide to Managed Services and The Guide to a Successful Managed Services Practice were published in 2006 by Palachuk and Simpson, respectively. Since then, the managed services business model has gained ground among enterprise-level companies. As the value-added reseller (VAR) community evolved to a higher level of services, it adapted the managed service model and tailored it to SMB companies.
At the outset of enterprise computing, information technology services and management was on a break/fix basis, meaning that computer systems were only managed by an expert when they did not work, necessitating a technician to fix it. This technician may also have been the person who built and/or installed the computer system, due to the proliferation of small IT shops that specialized in this small-scale client services at the time.